BY SHIELA G. GELERA
Residents of Purok Fire in Barangay 8, Bacolod City, yesterday staged a protest and sought help after their main passageway was blocked by a perimeter fence put up by the Bureau of Fire Protection-Bacolod.
Barangay 8 captain Johanna Magalona said the BFP constructed the perimeter fence without formal prior notice to the affected residents composed of 50 families, or 34 households.
Magalona said there is another passageway behind the facility, but the land is a private property and could be closed anytime by the owner.
The residents have asked the help of the barangay to talk to the Bacolod BFP and they also sent a letter to the regional office of the BFP about their concern, Magalona said.
Fire Senior Supt. Jerry Candido, BFP-6 regional director, said yesterday that the fencing project was already finished and cannot be immediately taken down as it is government property and procedures need to be followed.
“The most we can for for them is to install a gate where they can pass during emergencies, and not for everyday use,” Candido said.
While the BFP understands the situation of the residents, he said they could not immediately construct the gate as they also need to follow protocols considering that the fencing project is on property of the government and has not been turned over to them yet, Candido also said.
He added that they also need to find a budget for the project, undergo bidding, and comply with all legal matters.*